Para-cycling ace apologises

British para-cycling world champion Jon-Allan Butterworth has apologised for comments he made criticising fellow athletes.

Butterworth, 26, said he believed Great Britain Paralympic athletes outside of cycling were “just having a laugh”.

But he later apologised for such remarks.

“I was ill-informed and was not aware how hard the selection process is in athletics,” he said.

“The team ethos is important to me and I apologise if I have upset any of my fellow athletes.”

Butterworth was upset that Paralympic athletics received more funding than cycling in the build-up to the 2012 Games despite cycling out-performing their counterparts in Beijing.

GB cycling won 17 gold and three silver medals in 2008 while athletics picked up two gold, seven silver and eight bronze.

Peter Eriksson, head coach of the UK Athletics Paralympic programme, was not impressed by Butterworth’s original comments, especially since his team showed a massive improvement with 12 gold, nine silver and 17 bronze medals at last year’s World Championships.

Meanwhile, an official at an athletics event in the German city of Dusseldorf has died after being speared in the throat with a javelin.

The 74-year-old man was rushed to hospital after the accident on Sunday but died of his injuries.

The official, named locally as Dieter Strack, had gone to measure a throw but was hit by a javelin before it hit the ground.

The competition was called off after the incident.

The 15-year-old competitor who threw the javelin is receiving psychological counselling.


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